Mother sentenced for brandishing gun toward daughter's attacker

BRANCH COUNTY — The 43-year-old mother of a sexual assault victim will be on probation for 18 months for brandishing a gun toward the teen who pleaded guilty to assaulting the girl.

The Daily Reporter is not naming the woman to protect the identity of the teen victim. The woman received an admonishment from Circuit Judge Bill O’Grady about her conduct on Bishop Avenue on Oct. 22 next to Heritage Park, where the confrontation took place.

Circuit Judge Bill O'Grady warned a mother about brandishing a gun especially near Heritage Park.
Circuit Judge Bill O'Grady warned a mother about brandishing a gun especially near Heritage Park.

“There's never been a time where I have driven through that part of the city to not see it filled with young people playing soccer, children at the small pocket park,” O'Grady said. “Do you understand (that) all it would have taken as one accidental random trigger pull? You could have inadvertently killed some little boy across the street or some teenage boy playing soccer.”

The woman saw the 19-year-old man out with friends when she drove up and pulled a purple Glock 9mm pistol out of the car. The mother called 911, insisting there was a warrant out for Olando Trader for the sexual assault reported in July.

The investigation by the Branch County Sheriff's Office was not yet completed at the time. Coldwater Police arrested the mother and not Trader. She initially was charged with felonious assault, which were later reduced to a misdemeanor brandishing a weapon in a plea bargain.

Prior story Former GVSU student pleads guilty in sexual assault case

O’Grady said when emotions are high is when accidental shootings take place.

“I am hopeful that this is an incredible life lesson for you,” he said.

“It's been certainly a learning experience for my client having gone through the criminal justice system, having been arrested, processed, spent two days in jail, retain me, and dealing with the realities of coming to court and all of the anxiety that comes with it," defense attorney William Weise said.

“I am deeply and profoundly sorry, your honor," the woman said. "I have learned a lot. I should have let law enforcement handle the situation. It was inappropriate for my emotions to get the best of me.”

The judge imposed a 90-day jail sentence, but suspended the additional time she would need to serve beyond the initial two days. The woman forfeited her gun and must not possess a weapon during probation.

Branch County Circuit Court
Branch County Circuit Court

Weise and his client did not object to a $600 restitution order to Trader.

“I suppose it's for counseling for the young man involved. I would indicate that this may have manifested itself after the fact,” the attorney said.

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Trader entered a guilty plea Feb. 2 to fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct, a high court misdemeanor. He will be sentenced April 17, and is guaranteed probation under the Holmes Youthful Training Act with no up-front jail. 

— Contact Don Reid: Follow him on Twitter: @DReidTDR.

This article originally appeared on Coldwater Daily Reporter: Mother sentenced for brandishing gun toward daughter's attacker